php-5.4.1_rc1 fails with apache-2.4.1 on gentoo

Today the apache-2.4.1 ebuild has appeared in gentoos portage tree. Emerging php-5.4.1_rc1 fails with installed apache-2.4.1 web server  on gentoo with the following error message:

Configuring SAPI modules
checking for AOLserver support… no
checking for Apache 1.x module support via DSO through APXS… no
checking for Apache 1.x module support… no
checking whether to enable Apache charset compatibility option… no
checking for Apache 2.0 filter-module support via DSO through APXS… no
checking for Apache 2.0 handler-module support via DSO through APXS…

Sorry, I cannot run apxs.  Possible reasons follow:

1. Perl is not installed
2. apxs was not found. Try to pass the path using –with-apxs2=/path/to/apxs
3. Apache was not built using –enable-so (the apxs usage page is displayed)

The output of /usr/sbin/apxs follows:
./configure: line 8325: /usr/sbin/apxs: No such file or directory
configure: error: Aborting

The reason for this is, that the apxs executable does not get installed with the apache-2.4.1 ebuild. According to this issue got fixed with the apache-2.4.1-r1 ebuild.  However, after upgrading apache to 2.4.1-r1 emerging php still fails with the same error message. A quick look onto the filesystem shows that /usr/sbin/apxs got installed as well as the /usr/sbin/apxs2 symlink got created.

mittelerde sbin # ls -alsh apxs*
24K -rw-r–r– 1 root root  23K  1. Apr 16:14 apxs
0 lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root   14  1. Apr 16:14 apxs2 -> /usr/sbin/apxs

This also reveals the reason for emerging php failing with apache-2.4.1-r1. The /usr/sbin/apxs perl-script coming with the apache-2.4.1-r1 ebuild lacks the executable flag.

Thus a simple

chmod +x /usr/sbin/apxs

solves the issue and emerging php afterwards works like a charm. Most probably this will get fixed with the next apache ebuild. To get the apache configuration working after the 2.4 upgrade, you might want to read: Upgrading to 2.4 from 2.2.


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Pagerank 0 everywhere

Starting yesterday, the Google Pagerank of all sites is being displayed as 0 or n/a.  Pagerank is not that important for determining the quality of a site as it was once. It can still be a hint to see how good search engine optimizations (SEO) are for a site, or if the site needs improvements.

Many bloggers wondered what happened to their sites. Then there were the usual rumors, about Google disabling the Pagerank completely and Googles License for the Pagerank expiring.  The Pagerank algorithm weightens websites by importance. This is done by weighting inbound links to a site by the Pagerank of the referring site. So links from sites with a higher Pagerank are more valuable than links from sites with a lower one. The algorithm was developed by  the Google founders Brin and Page, but the patent for the algorithm was assigned to Stanford University. Google has got an exclusive license till 2011, afterwards the license becomes non-exclusive. Thus the expiring of this license has no impact on the availability of Pagerank at all, it only means, that others also could get a license for the algorithm and use it. The real cause for the Pagerank displays not working anymore is being discussed in [1]. It is quite simple: The Google API for inquiring the Pagerank has changed. For most scripts it is sufficient to replace the string with

Some Firefox extensions, like SEOQuake, can be fixed by running the following command line in the extensions folder of the firefox profile:

grep -rl . | xargs -t sed -i -e ‘s/\/search/\/tbr/’

After a firefox restart the Pagerank in i.e. SEOQuake is being displayed correctly again. For some other extensions there has to be done some more work and one has to wait for the next update to get this fixed. The pages providing online Pagerank information, like, can also be expected to get fixed soon. In the meanwhile one can use the Online Pagerank Checker of Jens Altmann to check the Pagerank.






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Java encoding

For one of our projects I had to write a simple program, for importing items into our online store ( When I finished the coding everything seemed to run smooth, but only on Windows. Afterwards I tested the program on my linux box and it did not work.

After checking all files I found out that the encoding of the files was wrong for importing into our shop. With the help of google and some other sites the problem was solved. I had to use ISO-8859-1 for all files, because the core data is 8859.

To read a file I use the following code now:

BufferedReader in = new BufferedReader(new InputStreamReader(connection.getInputStream(),”ISO-8859-1″));

and to write:

Writer bw = new BufferedWriter(new OutputStreamWriter(new FileOutputStream(fileName), “ISO-8859-1”));

I hope this will help someone who has a similar problem.



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marquee script

Recently we had the task to create an animated web banner containing a marquee (in German Laufschrift) in Linux. Since we were not able to find a piece of software performing this task in an efficient way, I decided to write a small script for this. It uses ImageMagik (in my case V6.4.4.6) to generate an marquee below a supplied image and produces an animated gif as output. The script contains a config section where you may supply the input logo, the marquee text and some further settings like font and color:

# Settings

#the text for the marquee text=”+++ put the text for the marquee here +++ 0111011001101100101100011101010001001001010110010111010101 ”

#  files

#input file


#output file


#background color


# font settings




# animation settings

stepsize=6     #if possible this should be a part of the textwidth (see output) #if chosen too small this may result in too large images

delay=10       #speed

Just put in the necessary settings and run the script. You can also use the script on your web-server to update your banners with new text on the fly. You may download the script here:

[download#1] gplv3-127x51

Regards Jürgen

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